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Letter 'ą' and 'ę' pronounciation before 'z', 's', 'ś', 'ź', 'ż


Gooze 1 | 2
1 Feb 2014  #1
I would like person to answer, whose native language is Polish.

1. Letter 'ą' and 'ę' pronounciation before 'z', 's', 'ś', 'ź', 'ż', 'sz', 'ch', 'h', 'cz', 'c'. Are they pronounced with 'n'? Some examples: mąż, mężowie, wiązać, dręczyć, dążyć...

And words "część", "gęś", "mężczyzna", "przemysł". Are they pronounced like "czeńść", "geńś", "menszczyzna", "pszemysu"?

2. I would like to see these sentences (numbers) written with words:

1. 305,589,627 mężczyzn.
2. 156-ty człowiek
3. 109-ty człowiek
4. 2006-ty rok
5. 1105-ty rok
6. 1000,001-ty rok.

3. In one text I saw that with word "mieć" (and some others, like "dać"), is used dopełniacz, not biernik (it wasn't negative sentence and inanimate noun). But I know that they are use with biernik. Which case I should use with these words? "Mam nowego domu" or "Mam nowy dom"?

4. I was given a thing from someone. Which sentence should I use: "Tę rzecz mi dali" or "Tę rzecz mi dano"?

I would be very thankful.
lunacy - | 73
1 Feb 2014  #2
1. "ą" and "ę" should be always pronounced as they are. Turning it to "on" or "en" occur in some dialects only. As it comes to "rz" after a consonant (like in "przemysł" or "krzesło") - its pronounciation softens. If it's easier to pronounce to you, you could indeed say "pszemysł" or "kszesło".

2. Are they all in mianownik? If yes:
305,589,627 mężczyzn -> trzysta pięć milionów pięćset osiemdziesiąt dziewięć tysięcy sześćset dwudziestu siedmiu mężczyzn.
156-ty człowiek -> sto pięćdziesiąty szósty człowiek
109-ty człowiek -> sto dziewiąty człowiek
2006-ty rok -> dwa tysiące szósty rok
1105-ty rok -> tysiąc sto piąty rok
1000,001-szy rok. -> milion pierwszy rok

3. It's an exception - singular masculine nouns that are non-viable take the mianownik form in dopełniacz: "Mam nowy dom.", "Mam nowy komputer.", "Mam nowy rower." but "Mam nowego mężczyznę.", "Mam nowego kolegę.", "Mam nowego kuzyna.". Is it more clear now?

4. "Tę rzecz mi dano" would be gramatically correct.

mianownik form in dopełniacz

Should be: in biernik, sorry. This article (in Polish) is a good explanation of the gender forms in Polish: rjp.pan.pl (three types of masculine forms: męskoosobowy, męskożywotny, męskonieżywotny)
Wlodzimierz 4 | 544
1 Feb 2014  #3
An interesting overview article indeed for those who know Polish. As I glanced through it, although I know Polish, I wondered about the MYRIAD umpteen exceptions to the instances given. I wondered after reading it whether I would necessarily be able to guess that "odpowiedź" for example is a feminine noun!

I still have to puzzle over the gender of certain nouns.
lunacy - | 73
1 Feb 2014  #4
I still have to puzzle over the gender of certain nouns.

A clearly defined list of all the exceptions should be created (or maybe it exist somewhere already?), it would be so much of a help, just like the list of english irregular verbs for example.

I found texts in English in the meantime: epubs.surrey.ac.uk/2224/1/The_Number_of_Genders_in_Polish.pdf (there's a useful graph showing types of the grammar "genders" in Polish) and en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Polish/More_on_nouns_-_genders
Wlodzimierz 4 | 544
1 Feb 2014  #5
Many thanks for the links, lunacy!
Ziemowit 12 | 3,618
2 Feb 2014  #6
As it comes to "rz" after a consonant (like in "przemysł" or "krzesło") - its pronounciation softens.

Not exactly! When "rz" follows the voiced consonant, its pronounciation will be voiced, so it is pronounced as "ż" (brzemienny, grzech, zrzęda, drzeć). The term "softens" does not apply to the voiced/unvoiced opposition. It applies to the opposition: b/b' ---> badać/biadać, p/p' ---> pasek/piasek, etc.

If it's easier to pronounce to you, you could indeed say "pszemysł" or "kszesło".

You must say "pszemysł" or "kszesło", there is actually no other choice than to say it like that when "rz" follows the unvoiced consonant!
lunacy - | 73
2 Feb 2014  #7
Indeed, I'm sorry, it softens after the consonants: p, t, k, ch (correct me if I missed something please).
Theoretically, "rz" after them should be only softened (a sound between "rz" and "sz") but it's hard to pronounce correctly even to most of the Polish people, so saying "sz" in such cases is normal. If you'll ever have the occasion to watch old Polish movies - listen closely, they are sometimes saying the "hard sz"/"soft rz" sound in such cases:) Nowadays I heard such pronounciation among some of e.g. college professors, but in general it's considered as hyper-correctness of phonetics = not well-perceived usually.
McDouche 6 | 286
2 Feb 2014  #8
"ą" and "ę" should be always pronounced as they are. Turning it to "on" or "en" occur in some dialects only

Really? I've never heard a Pole pronounce them always "as they are."
lunacy - | 73
2 Feb 2014  #9
Because most of people are sloppy. Some people tend to overexpress the sound of "ę"/"ą" which is an annoying hyper-correctness as well.

It's rare to hear English or any other language pronounced clearly in colloquial speech.
Wlodzimierz 4 | 544
2 Feb 2014  #10
The links which lunacy posted I've found very useful. It freely admits (in the Polish version from Rada języka polskiego) that there is often zero way of knowing every single time which noun is which gender just based on the ending, e.g. "goŚĆ" (m.) BUT "koŚĆ" (f.), or "kreW" (f.), "breW" (f.) BUT "zleW" (m.) etc.....

Most noun gender as well as their class and or number must often simply be learned by heart!

Rock on, gang, keep 'em a-comin':-)
Ziemowit 12 | 3,618
3 Feb 2014  #11
If you'll ever have the occasion to watch old Polish movies - listen closely, they are sometimes saying the "hard sz"/"soft rz" sound in such cases:)

That's interesting! Actually, I've never heard this difference which doesn't mean it may not exist. It might perhaps be an echo of the more real difference that once existed in the language hence the difference in today's spelling. Likewise, I have an impression that the difference in pronounciation between "ó" and "u" can sometimes be heard in old Polish films. Also, the vowels "e" and "é" were once separate from one another and you can observe this different spelling in print in texts dating back to the end of the 19th century.
OP Gooze 1 | 2
3 Feb 2014  #12
Leading instructions, tutorials, words język, często should be pronounced jeųzyk and czeųsto, but I often heard on TV and real conversation jenzyk and czensto, so... how should I pronounce?

And now numerals. I didn't understand a bit.

1. Cardinal numbers
I know that mięskoosobowy in mianownik uses different form, like pięciu, dwaj, trzynastu, stu..., but I saw that not all parts, I mean hundreds, thousands, millions, are in that form. So when should I use them in mięskoosobowy form with mięskoosobowy nouns? I mean trzystu or trzysta and so on...

2. Ordinal numbers
When do I need to use hundreds and thousands part in Ordinal form in compound numbers? I mean where tysięczny, where tysiąc; where dwusty, where dwieście/dwustu.

I hope I will be understood, If not, I will explain clearler.
Wlodzimierz 4 | 544
4 Feb 2014  #13
I continue to make mistakes, Gooze, so I'm not even going to attempt an authoritative explanation which might well end up confusing instead of clarifying. That's the annoying thing about mistakes, isn't it; once you make them, like a pc virus, they're next to impossible to rid from one's system, often remaining forever even long after the correction's been made and digested:-)

Suffice to say this much re: number, gender and class: Dwie polki szły dzisiaj na spacer. = Two Polish women (females) went for a walk today.

Dwaj panowie szli dzisiaj na spacer. = Two gentlemen (virile "living" males!!) went for a walk today.
Dwoje dzieci szło dzisiaj na spacer. = Two children (neuter "non-virile", even if male!!!) went for a walk today.
FIne up through FIVE:
Pięć polEK szły......= Five Polish females.....
Pięćiu panÓW szło...... = Five gentlemen .....
Thus far I'm almost rock-solid certain and so I'll stop:-)

Lithuanian too appears to my eyes a pretty conservative language, although I've never made a formal study of it.
lunacy - | 73
9 Feb 2014  #14
Will THIS Polish article help as it comes to numbers? It has a pretty helpful set of the most basic examples and it's hard for me to find anything similar in English at the moment..

As Wlodzimierz mentioned, it always depends on the
1. number (different rules for the 1, 2, 3-4, 5-10, 11-40, 50-90, 100-400 and 500-900 groups of numbers),
2. noun's gender
3. and the grammatical case.
A good table of the numbers 1-10 for all grammatical cases is HERE: grzegorj.w.interia.pl/gram/pl/liczeb02.html - it's in Polish again (sorry), but table itself is kinda easy to depict and it has examples for all the basic genders: męskoosobowy (pan), męskożywotny (pies), męskonieżywotny (stół), żeński (pani), nijaki osobowy/żywotny (dziecko), nijaki nieosobowy/nieżywotny (drzewo).

The simple example Wlodzimierz has started is in Mianownik and would go like:
(I chose pani=lady and pan=gentleman)
Jedna pani (Polka) szła / Jeden pan szedł / Jedno dziecko szło.
Dwie panie (Polki) szły / Dwaj panowie szli OR Dwóch panów szło [yes, that second form is acceptable] / Dwoje dzieci szło.

Trzy panie (Polki) szły / Trzej panowie szli OR Trzech panów szło / Troje dzieci szło.
Cztery panie (Polki) szły / Czterej panowie szli OR Czterech panów szło / Czworo dzieci szło.
Then it goes easier with the numbers 5-10, at least as it comes to the verb:
Pięć (sześć, ..., dziewięć, dziesięć) pań (Polek) szło / Pięciu (sześciu, ..., dziewięciu, dziesięciu) panów szło / Pięcioro (sześcioro, ..., dziewięcioro, dziesięcioro) dzieci szło.

Aaaand another gem for people who know at least a bit of Polish language: "Liczebnik polski" where you can type a number, choose the gender & grammatical case - and you'll get the right form of the cardinal number.

Leading instructions, tutorials, words język, często should be pronounced jeųzyk and czeųsto, but I often heard on TV and real conversation jenzyk and czensto, so... how should I pronounce?

Well, the simple answer is: you should always pronounce "ą" and "ę" correctly:)

Saying "jenzyk", "czensto" or cutting it at the end of a word like in: "sie", "cie", "pójde", "zrobie" (instead of "się", "cię", "pójdę", "zrobię") etc. is ALWAYS a form of dialect or regionalizm and if a TV presenter says so, it just shows his/her region of origin (or, according to some *cough* mean people, their "peasant background" which is a terrible misinformation in most of the cases) and a possibility of him/her being just a social climber who didn't attend the (theoretically necessary) diction training;) That's, sadly, the harsh truth.

You don't want to learn a dialect - you want to learn a "clear" Polish language. As Wlodzimierz wrote, once you'd start making mistakes, they become a habit, very hard to get rid of.

First, learn how to pronounce "ą" and "ę" correctly, just like for example Polish people are learning how to pronounce "ð" sound as in "the":) Don't worry too much because Polish people themselves are often simplyfying/cutting the sound of "ą" and "ę", but again: you don't want to learn a dialect or "street language" as the basics.

As I wrote here before, you have to be careful - "ą" and "ę" are rather soft and not too long (e.g. shouldn't resemble French too much) - overexpressing them resulted in calling "ą-ę" (or "ę-ą") a person who is overly snobby/pretentious;) "On/ona jest taka ą-ę" = He/she is so snobbish, unnatural, I cant stand him/her.

Girl in this short video has rather a correct pronunciation and tells about the basic kinds of numerals in Polish:
OP Gooze 1 | 2
14 Feb 2014  #15
I know that words like się, cię, idę, robię should be pronounced without nasality. But I didn't understand at all - so jeųzyk or jenzyk? I know how to pronounce ą and ę, and I know that in some cases they are pronounced and , and in other en and on.

102-ty isn't setny drugi? And 102 chłopców isn't stu dwóch chłopców?
lunacy - | 73
14 Feb 2014  #16
But I didn't understand at all - so jeųzyk or jenzyk?

Correct is język as described: IPA: [ˈjɛ̃w̃zɨk], AS: [i ̯ẽũ̯zyk]

I wrote clearly that "jenzyk" in an example of a dialect-based pronunciation, a simplification, therefore not correct if you want to learn a "clear" Polish language.

102-ty isn't setny drugi? And 102 chłopców isn't stu dwóch chłopców?

Someone who is 102th = singular form, "which one?" -> sto drugi
102 boys = plural form, "how many?" -> stu dwóch

Singular forms answering the question "which one?" in mianownik [ordinal numbers] are quite simple:
the very basic rule is to conjugate only the last digit of the number (or two digits if a decimal number is last in the row) that is other than zero.

Here's example of saying which year is it:
Year 2000 -> rok dwutysięczny
Year 2014 -> rok dwa tysiące czternasty
Year 1002 -> rok tysiąc drugi
Year 1256 -> rok tysiąc dwieście pięćdziesiąty szósty
Year 1200 -> rok tysiąc dwusetny
Wlodzimierz 4 | 544
15 Feb 2014  #17
...however in stating the year, wouldn't one say "dwa tysiące czternastEGO rokU", or, meaning "In 2014.." W dwa tysiące czternastYM rokU...."??

Occasionally I also get confused on this point:-)
lunacy - | 73
15 Feb 2014  #18
Learn the basics first!:) What you recalled above is a declination of the word "rok" in different grammar cases. Numerals that describe a noun ("rok" in this situation) have to be declined adequately in the same grammar case.

The "base" I wrote as an example is in mianownik (nominative):
It's year 2014. -> Jest (który rok?) dwa tysiące czternasty rok.

The 1st example you wrote "dwa tysiące czternastego roku" occurs when e.g. you describe a precise day of the year, therefore "rok" is in dopełniacz (genitive):

Today is 15th Feb [of the year] 2014 -> Dzisiaj jest piętnasty stycznia (którego roku?) dwa tysiące czternastego roku.

The 2nd example you wrote "w dwa tysiące czternastym roku" - when you e.g. describe a situation which happened in a particular year, therefore "rok" is in miejscownik (locativus):

It happened in the year 2014. -> To stało się (w którym roku?) w dwa tysiące czternastym roku.

Declination with examples of "help" questions:
mianownik: rok (jest który rok?) - > dwa tysiące czternasty rok
dopełniacz: roku (jest dzień którego roku?) - > dwa tysiące czternastego roku
celownik: rokowi (przyglądam się któremu rokowi?) - > dwa tysiące czternastemu rokowi
biernik: rok (lubię który rok?) - > dwa tysiące czternasty rok
narzędnik: rokiem (z którym rokiem?) - > [z] dwa tysiące czternastym rokiem
miejscownik: roku (w którym roku?) - > [w] dwa tysiące czternastym roku
wołacz: roku! - > dwa tysiące czternasty roku!

stycznia

*lutego

[sorry, I was writing too quickly, apparently my mind is still in January]
Wlodzimierz 4 | 544
16 Feb 2014  #19
Your explanation is most complete:-)
Much appreciated. Having learned "the basics", as you call them, long ago, I still need to refresh them from time to time. Same with your English, I'm sure. On the whole however, it's quite good.

Occasionally too, I'll confuse "Przemysł" (the town near present-day Ukraine) with "przemyśl" (industry) when I write, though oddly enough, not when I speak.
lunacy - | 73
17 Feb 2014  #20
Occasionally too, I'll confuse "Przemysł" (the town near present-day Ukraine) with "przemyśl" (industry) when I write, though oddly enough, not when I speak.

:D
Indeed :P

przemysł = industry
There's also a name Przemysław which comes from an older version Przemysł.
Word przemysł in old-Polish was a noun meaning ingenuity, cleverness.

Przemyśl = name of the city near Polish-Ukrainian border
myśleć -> przemyśleć = a verb meaning: to think through / to reflect on [sth]
Wlodzimierz 4 | 544
17 Feb 2014  #21
Aha, now I see the difference!
Many thanks once again:-)


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